Welcome to the tropics, where the weather isn’t the only thing that gets HOT!
Bombings, worlds apart, throw two survivors together. Troy, a mental wreck and physically damaged due to his last tour as a Special Ops soldier, is asked to protect Shayne from an unknown enemy. Is he up to the task? Can he keep his emotional distance from a woman who has become all too important to him?
Shayne Peterson cheated death when she survived a bombing at a Tampa country club. Still, she fights a nightly battle against the terror of being trapped under the rubble and her inability to identify the man who left the deadly package. After a move to Sanibel Island, she finds herself surrounded by former Green Berets. She feels safe—until it becomes obvious that she’s not.
A suicide bomber in an Afghani marketplace left Troy McKenzie, Special Forces soldier and former ladies’ man, disfigured. He should have died that day—punishment for his arrogance and misplaced trust. Unable to get past the memories and the boy he couldn’t save, Troy returns to Sanibel, seeking the support of his former brothers-in-arms.
Soon Shayne and Troy are battling their unexpected, and ill-timed, attraction to one another while staying one step ahead of a killer.
Shayne Peterson gagged as she battled her way out of the darkness. She recognized the smells of charred wood and spilled liquor. But it was something stronger, more acrid, that had her retching. Attempting to roll to her side to vomit, she stopped when she couldn’t move anything below her hips. She was trapped. Panic quickly bubbled up inside her, but she forced it down along with the bile in her throat.
Her legs were firmly pinned to the floor. Whatever entrapped her also had created a vacuum over her upper body. She couldn’t move her legs, but she could feel her toes. Thank God. Her head hurt like a bitch. Every inch of her body cried out, some parts more than others. The fact that she felt pain was a positive omen. She was still in one piece.
Her back and legs were damp and cold where her clothes clung to her skin. Blood? Please, not blood.
Get it together, girl, her dad snapped. Shaking her head, she tried to clear her thoughts. Her dad was dead. He’d been gone ten years. Still, dead or alive, he was right. Whatever had happened, panic wouldn’t help. She gulped in a long breath through her mouth to avoid the nauseating scents. Then a second. A few breaths later, she’d calmed enough to focus on her surroundings.
Think. She’d been leaving the country club when she’d noticed another bartender breaking down a cash bar that had been set up for a charity event. She’d stopped to help. Right after the man left for the storeroom with a case of liquor, it happened. A blast. She’d felt it before she’d heard it. An invisible force knocked the air from her lungs before the unbelievable heat had engulfed her. Then blackness.
C. F. Francis is a native Floridian. Her knowledge of the area makes her settings come alive. Born in Tampa and raised on the “gold coast”, she now calls Southwest Florida her home. Her stories take place primarily on Sanibel Island but as she loves to explore, other parts of the state occasionally serve a backdrop for her stories.
Francis began writing in 2015 and published her first book, Sanctuary Island, in 2016. Lovers Key followed in 2017 (placing 2nd in a national competition). Her newest novel, Explosive Touch, came out in February 2019.
Her background includes tourism, legislative, law and healthcare. She has a special relationship with several members of the military including Green Berets and Army Intelligence. They volunteer their knowledge to keep her novels honest.
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